Links for 2010-08-27

  • "For instance, when the main reactor fails in Star Trek they call it a "warp core breech" and it happens so often there's an entire page listing times it has happened on the Star Trek wiki. Seriously, it was like every third episode.

    Their only safety measure against this was, hilariously, to "eject" the warp core out into space to allow it to explode (taking anyone nearby with it) and leave the ship utterly disabled. You know, like how when you have engine trouble on your car, your only option is to punch a button that makes your engine go flying out of the hood.

    Do we even need to talk about the Death Star? Or what happens when their main reactor takes any kind of damage?"

  • A selection of novellas to consider tracking down for when I need to fill out a hugo nomination ballot next year.
  • "Yes, the stimulus has cut taxes for 95% of working Americans, bailed out every state, hustled record amounts of unemployment benefits and other aid to struggling families and funded more than 100,000 projects to upgrade roads, subways, schools, airports, military bases and much more. But in the words of Vice President Joe Biden, Obama's effusive Recovery Act point man, "Now the fun stuff starts!" The "fun stuff," about one-sixth of the total cost, is an all-out effort to exploit the crisis to make green energy, green building and green transportation real; launch green manufacturing industries; computerize a pen-and-paper health system; promote data-driven school reforms; and ramp up the research of the future. "This is a chance to do something big, man!" Biden said during a 90-minute interview with TIME."
  • "[A] series of recent studies by psychologists at Queen's University adds an important wrinkle to the Tiger Woods parable. The scientists began by analyzing the birthplace of more than 2,000 athletes in a variety of professional sports, such as the NHL, NBA, and the PGA. This is when they discovered something peculiar: the percent of professional athletes who came from cities of fewer than a half million people was far higher than expected. While approximately 52 percent of the United States population resides in metropolitan areas with more than 500,000 people, such cities only produce 13% of the players in the NHL, 29% of the players in the NBA, 15% of the players in MLB, and 13% of players in the PGA."
  • "When citing telepathic transmissions from alien planets/spacecraft:

    1. Name the aliens who sent the message (if known).
    2. Identify the location of planet or craft.
    3. Identify the location where transmission was received.
    4. List the date the transmission was received."


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